Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site

Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site Welcome to the official Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site page. Schuyler Mansion was once home to Philip J. Schuyler (1733-1804), renowned Revolutionary War Major-General, State Senator, and business entrepreneur.
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2019 Season: May 15 - Oct 31, Wednesday - Sunday Hours: May & June: 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. July & August: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. September & October: 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tour Times: May & June: Tours begin at 11:00 a.m., are offered on the hour, with the last tour beginning at 4:00 p.m. July & Aug: Tours begin at 10:00 a.m., are offered on the hour, with the last tour at 4:00 p.m. Please note: The last tour on SUNDAYS during these two months, will be at 3:00 p.m. Sept & Oct: Tours begin at 11:00 a.m., are offered on the hour, with the last tour at 4:00 p.m. Tour Info: Generally, tours begin at the above listed hours; however, pre-registered groups and special events will alter the tour schedule. Calling prior to your visit to check for schedule changes highly recommended. All tours at Schuyler Mansion are guided tours. Visitors may enter the house only when accompanied by staff. General tours last an hour. General tours are offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Schuyler Mansion does not take reservations for general tours (except for large groups, of course). Please call the site at (518) 434 – 0834 if you have further questions about Schuyler Mansion's open hours or tours.

Happy Mothers' Day to Catharine van Rensselaer Schuyler! Catharine had fifteen kids over 25 years (the oldest and younge...
05/12/2019

Happy Mothers' Day to Catharine van Rensselaer Schuyler!

Catharine had fifteen kids over 25 years (the oldest and youngest sharing a birthday even 😮). Sadly, only eight survived to reach adulthood, but all received love and care from their mother.

Like all parent/child relationships, they sometimes clashed, with several children marrying in secret, dropping in and out of school, or running up large amounts of debt which their parents helped pay off, but family letters tell us that Catharine enjoyed a close relationship with her kids, even when they were out on their own, living far away. Angelica, who had been the first child to elope, wrote to her mother regularly from London in the 1790's, including a letter where she describes parties thrown for the Prince of Wales and his friends, and apparently sent her mother "a tea caddy and a card to make you laugh".

Want to learn more about the relationship between Catharine and her children? Join us for one out our women of Schuyler Mansion focus tours (check out our events page for more info!), or read some of the articles about the Women of Schuyler Mansion on our blog: http://schuylermansion.blogspot.com/search/label/women

If you missed it for Valentine's day, Mother's Day is the perfect time to read about another mother (and grandmother) from 18th century Albany- Brit, a woman enslaved by the Ten Broeck family, who raised her children with her husband Will, enslaved by the Schuylers. Read about them here: http://schuylermansion.blogspot.com/2019/02/not-two-miles-apart-brit-will-and-love.html

04/29/2019

A small electrical fire on Clinton Street this weekend has knocked out the site's phone service. We are working to have this fixed ASAP.

04/26/2019

Our main line (518-434-0834) is dropping calls this morning. If you are trying to reach the site, please try line two: 518-434-0835

04/25/2019

Our recent call for actors on a local listserv that called for volunteers to portray enslaved Africans was wrong and inappropriate. Proposing that people of color freely give their time to portray enslaved people at the grand house on the hill has been rightfully criticized. We apologize for the insensitivity expressed in this audition notice.

Schuyler Mansion and Fort Crailo State Historic Sites have sought to acknowledge and celebrate Pinkster in recent years. At Pinkster, both free and enslaved people of African descent gathered on their own terms and participated in cultural expressions that were often illegal during the rest of the year. The outlawing of Pinkster in Albany in 1811 represented an attempt to silence voices. These historic sites have sought to remember these individuals, acknowledge their lives, honor them, and share the African cultural traditions that were at the core of Pinkster.

Actors on site for past events have been paid unless they have chosen to waive their fees; actors who are scheduled to perform at Pinkster will be paid. We appreciate the talents that have been shared with us and the public at past Pinkster celebrations and believe there is a story here that still needs to be told.

04/19/2019

TDIH: 19 April 1775: Lexington and Concord Incident outside Boston.

244 Years ago today, an event took place that would change Philip Schuyler’s life drastically. Though he was not directly involved, and despite its occurrence nearly 200 miles away from his Albany home, it was of massive importance to both his life and the fate of North America.
On the morning of 19 April, 1775, the first shots of the Revolutionary War were fired on Lexington Green, in Lexington, Massachusetts. The ensuing advance by Crown Forces to Concord, and their subsequent retreat to Boston that day, started the eight-year conflict which would define the rest of Philip’s life, and raise his profile as a military officer and politician to a national level.

04/19/2019

Our main phone line is dropping calls this morning. If you are trying to reach us by phone, we suggest calling on Line Two: 518-434-0835
Sorry for the inconvenience, and we'll look forward to hearing from you!

04/06/2019
First fight rehearsal Chavalier D'Eon vs St George

Today we started combat rehearsal for "The Match" at the Musicians of Ma'alwyck Spring Concert. Here's a behind the scenes look at early practice with Paola Gonzalez as Chevaliere d'Eon, and Devin Funnye as Chevalier de Saint-Georges.

While we are starting slow with choreography, this style of fencing was lightning fast. The drawn out fights up and down staircases are mostly the stuff of Hollywood. At slow speed this engagement takes 8 seconds. As movements are refined and the fencers deliver their techniques at full speed, well, all we can say is- don't blink or you'll miss it!

For more information about "The Match" and the Spring Concert, check out our events page!

A project I been working.

One of our favorite collections pieces. It is great to see Elizabeth getting the credit she's due! There is also the pos...
04/06/2019

One of our favorite collections pieces. It is great to see Elizabeth getting the credit she's due! There is also the possibility that Angelica sent or recommended it, given her own interest in economic theory. The Schuyler family in general was big on sharing books and book recommendations with one another.

Alexander Hamilton wasn't the only one in the family reading about economics and finances. Eliza Hamilton wrote her name into this c1789 copy of "Anderson's History of Commerce", now at Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site More in my latest blog post: https://susanhollowayscott.com/blog/2019/4/6/eliza-hamiltons-copy-of-andersons-history-of-commerce-c1789

This past January, we held our annual Twelfth Night celebration. Here are some photos of the festivities, courtesy of Ne...
04/04/2019

This past January, we held our annual Twelfth Night celebration. Here are some photos of the festivities, courtesy of New Windsor Cantonment. Thank you to our friends from New Windsor, the Friends of Schuyler Mansion, and all of the volunteers who helped us make Twelfth Night such a success!

Wise words, Mr. President. Allow us to take a moment to thank everyone who joined in with our April Fool's post yesterda...
04/02/2019

Wise words, Mr. President. Allow us to take a moment to thank everyone who joined in with our April Fool's post yesterday. Unfortunately, Albany was never haunted by a creature called the Grasmaan Boze Geest (but wouldn't that be an awesome tradition?!).

While the article was fake, there was some real history worked in! The 17th century Dutch community did pass regulations against discharging firearms in the town (including specific rules against shooting at weather vanes of all things).

Sheep farming was an important part of agrarian life, and at lambing time, many farmers would spend the night in the fields with their sheep so as to be on hand in case of complications.

Philip Schuyler was fascinated by mathematics, and really did attempt the mathematical computations mentioned in the article. Philip was both a man of Science, and a Man of Faith, who easily combined both aspects of his life. He also managed to retain many Dutch customs and traditions, even while Anglicizing his home and life.

While the letter was a fabrication, the tense relationship described between Philip Schuyler and his son-in-law, Washington Morton, is an accurate depiction of the two men's thoughts about the other. Philip ranted in letters about Morton avoiding spending time with the rest of the family, whereas Morton considered Philip to be equally obnoxious.

Even the image of the beast itself was real, but not created by a Joseph Valsenaam (translated: Joe Fake-Name). It's actually taken from a 1775 book on demonology, titled "Compendium rarissimum totius Artis Magicae sistematisatae per celeberrimos Artis hujus Magistros". The anonymous author claimed that it dated to the 11th century, but that itself seems to have been... shall we say, less than truthful.

The Grasmaan Boze Geest may not have haunted our streets, but the community of Albany and the Capital Region has generated some awesome folklore over the years. Feel free to share your favorite stories and myths in the comments below!

It seems that Spring is finally here to stay, but did you know that the return of warm weather was both a time for rejoi...
04/01/2019
The Grasmaand Boze Geest: 17th Century Albany’s Springtime Demon

It seems that Spring is finally here to stay, but did you know that the return of warm weather was both a time for rejoicing and a time for fear in 17th century Albany? Click the link below to read more!

by Ian Mumpton Albany has always been a community with rich cultural traditions and festivities. Often these are a time of celebration, ...

Today is the 213th anniversary of the foundation of the Orphan Asylum Society in NYC. Only two years after a period of i...
03/15/2019

Today is the 213th anniversary of the foundation of the Orphan Asylum Society in NYC. Only two years after a period of intense loss (including the deaths of her mother, father, and husband), Eliza Schuyler Hamilton was one of four women to co-found the institution. She later served as its First Directress from 1821-1848, stepping down when she was 91. Today, the same organization exists as Graham Windham, a nonprofit organization still dedicated to providing services for children and families.

The papier-mache pieces created by staff and FOSM members the other week have fully dried and been removed from the mold...
03/01/2019

The papier-mache pieces created by staff and FOSM members the other week have fully dried and been removed from the molds! The first image shows the bird fully dried and trimmed. The others are still untrimmed. The mold of the woman reading isn't shown here, but came out great as well. These will be going on the ceiling very soon!

Schuyler Mansion staff and FOSM members had the opportunity to see how the papier-mache ceiling for the Formal Parlor is...
02/23/2019

Schuyler Mansion staff and FOSM members had the opportunity to see how the papier-mache ceiling for the Formal Parlor is being reproduced up at Peebles Island, and even got to try their hands at making it!

TDIH: February 20th 1756 & February 20th, 1781, Catharine Schuyler’s first and last childbirthsIt’s a double Schuyle...
02/20/2019

TDIH: February 20th 1756 & February 20th, 1781, Catharine Schuyler’s first and last childbirths

It’s a double Schuyler Birthday!

263 years ago today, Catharine van Rensselaer Schuyler gave birth to her first child, Angelica, in Albany, just five months after she and Philip Schuyler were hastily married. Angelica would grow up first at the Schuyler house in the city of Albany itself, before moving in to the mansion outside of town with her family in 1765.

Angelica (shown on the left at the bottom, with a child and servant) is often best remembered for her elopement with John Barker Church, Alias John Carter, in 1777, which set a trend for the kids to come (four out of eight of the Schuyler kids eloped). However, she also assisted in managing Schuyler family matters from a young age, was involved in her father’s espionage activity during the American Revolution, and later demonstrated a superb flair for societal networking, making contacts with the most prominent people in American and European government and diplomacy. During Alexander Hamilton’s time as Secretary of the Treasury, she advised him on financial matters, even sending him reading suggestions as he prepared for the role. Angelica lived to 1814 and died in New York at the age of 57. She is buried in Trinity Churchyard, New York City.

Twenty-five years to the day after Angelica’s birth, her mother gave birth to her last child (she was 46 at the time), whom she named after herself. Little Catharine (or Katy as she was often called) was already an aunt at the time of her birth, and was only a few months older than several of her older sisters’ other children. She was her mother’s 15th, and 8th surviving, child. Katy (shown at right with one of her own children) grew up in a very different world than Angelica had. While Angelica came of age at the start of the American Revolution, the conflict would have been a dim memory to Katy, who would be raising her own children at the time of the War of 1812. Katy seems to have grappled with social anxiety at various points in her life, but still showed the same fire as her older sisters, eloping with Samuel Malcom in 1803. The couple would have two sons before Malcom’s death in 1815 at Stillwater. Katy sold off the property she had after Malcom’s death to pay his debts, and in 1820 married James Cochrane. The family moved to Oswego, NY, and she stayed there until her death in 1857 at the age of 76, surviving her second husband by several years.

The combined lifespan of these two sisters covered more than 100 years of American history, from before the formation of the country, to less than a decade before the bloody struggle of the Civil War would test the bonds forged in the Revolution and Founding Era. Join us in wishing Happy Birthday to the oldest AND the youngest Schuyler Sisters today!

The rooms at Schuyler Mansion are big, but when fully furnished, it can be hard to get a sense of just how big they are....
02/16/2019

The rooms at Schuyler Mansion are big, but when fully furnished, it can be hard to get a sense of just how big they are. Here are two shots from our spring cleaning of the Master Bedchamber yesterday, with one of our interpreters inside for scale.

Some people feel that it looks bigger without the curtains, and some with the curtains up. Which do you think?

Exciting News! Recently, through the generous efforts of the Friends of Schuyler Mansion and the Peebles Island Resource...
02/15/2019

Exciting News! Recently, through the generous efforts of the Friends of Schuyler Mansion and the Peebles Island Resource Center, the site was able to acquire a letter from Major General Philip Schuyler to Colonel Elias Dayton in the Mohawk Valley, from the Summer of 1776.

This important document is a major win for visitors to Schuyler Mansion and our curators and researchers will soon be examining its contents to share with the public this coming season.

It was an exciting auction, and contained many Washington, Lafayette and Hamilton documents and objects as well. The bidding for Philip's letter was fast and nerve-wracking, but luckily stopped at exactly $6,500 ($8125.00 with the buyer's premium)—the amount we had determined Friends of Schuyler Mansion could not go beyond. Considering that the only known privately owned Declaration of Independence ultimately went for $975,000, we really got a bargain!

We believe that careful study of this letter will offer important insights into Philip's efforts to resist British activity on the western front of the war in New York, and highlight the complexity of the strategic, logistical, and diplomatic demands he faced in his position as commander of the Northern Department.

As with many of the exciting opportunities at Schuyler Mansion, we owe a huge debt of gratitude to the Friends of Schuyler Mansion, and the team at Peebles Island. Three huzzahs for everyone who enabled this opportunity!

HUZZAH! HUZZAH! HUZZAH!

Thank you to our followers for the wonderful response to yesterday's Valentine's Day post about Will and Brit. There was...
02/15/2019
Not Two Miles Apart: Brit, Will, and Love in the Face of Slavery

Thank you to our followers for the wonderful response to yesterday's Valentine's Day post about Will and Brit. There was even more information that we couldn't fit in a Facebook post, so our staff expanded the post into a blog article that explores the story in more detail.

The image below is of the Dutch Church, as seen from Market street. While a slightly later image, many of the buildings depicted would have stood as shown on the day that Brit walked from the Ten Broeck house on Market street to the Dutch Church for the baptism of her first child, Susannah.

Click the link below to read more!

By Jessie Serfilippi and Ian Mumpton The Schuyler family history is full of intriguing romances—from Philip and Catharine’s rushed mar...

Happy Valentine's Day!Schuyler Mansion can be a romantic place, from dramatic elopements to Philip and Catharine's 40+ y...
02/14/2019

Happy Valentine's Day!

Schuyler Mansion can be a romantic place, from dramatic elopements to Philip and Catharine's 40+ years of companionship and support. Today we are celebrating a love story at Schuyler Mansion- one that persevered in the face of hardship.

Brit and Will were a couple who shared love and created a family, despite forced separation. Will (sometimes called Bill) was enslaved by the Schuyler family at their estate outside of Albany. Brit lived lived less than 2 miles away, on Market Street (roughly Broadway today), as an enslaved servant of the Ten Broeck family.

Despite this geographic proximity, Brit and Will likely had little opportunity to see each other. From their later connections to the church, and the fact that both the Schuylers and Ten Broecks were part of the congregation, they probably were able to attend church services together at the Dutch church, at least on occasion.

Their enslavers also were close friends, and Brit and Will may have accompanied them during visits to the other's property. However, Will is not mentioned as one of Philip's regular attendants, and Brit may have been assigned to cooking and housework, rather than attending the family on outings. Strict, punitive laws in place at various points in 18th century Albany, passed out of fear that social gatherings of slaves could lead to escape attempts or violent resistance, prevented enslaved people from gathering outside of their duties. The holiday of Pinkster was one of the only times of year when enslaved and free Black families were reliably able to come together for a time of celebration.

Despite this separation, their love persevered. On March 4, 1772, they celebrated the baptism of their daughter, Susannah, at the Dutch Church in Albany. On June 26, 1774, they celebrated the baptism of a second child named Herry.

While the record is largely silent on the lives of Will and Brit, their daughter, Susannah, eventually married Peter Roseboom on August 14, 1802, also at the Dutch Church in Albany. Over the next four years, they had three children: Dinah, Susan, and Mary. Susannah and her daughters were manumitted in 1810. One year later, Peter was manumitted as well. The couple had one more child, a daughter named Jane, in 1815.

So join us in wishing happy Valentine's Day, Brit and Will, and to Susannah and Peter!

Address

32 Catherine St
Albany, NY
12202

Albany CDTA routes: #6 Second Ave #7 Glenmont #100 Mid City Belt Disembark on the corner of South Pearl Street and Morton Ave, or, if taking the #100, in front of the Albany Courthouse. Walk up Morton Avenue, turning left on Clinton and right up Catherine to enter through the back gate.

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